Taylor Swift is giving fans an inside look at the process of making one of her most special videos. On Thursday, Taylor Swift released a behind-the-scenes video of the filming of her “All Too Well: The Short Film,” giving an inside look at not Taylor the singer, but Taylor the director.
The clip opens with Swift sharing some stern directions before sharing her excitement with Dylan O’Brien’s scene as she let’s out a loud “Yessss!” Swift is also seen sharing direction during one of the kissing scenes: “Beautiful! Now laugh,” she tells Sadie Sink.
Swift’s direction gets as specific as hand-holding in the short film as Swift moves Sink and O’Brien’s hands. “We want to see [the hands] on the table. That’s why it’s embarrassing,” Swift explains before she directs the actors playing O’Brien’s best friends at a dinner party.
“At a certain point, they’re going to have a moment of disconnect and you don’t have to even notice it at all,” she says. “You’re just having the best time at this dinner party.” (Jake Gyllenhaal, sound familiar?)
“That was literally perfect! Cut!” says Swift. “We have what we need.”
The video also shows Swift sharing directives with the “It’s supposed to be fun, turning 21” scene from the short film. “We should always see a falseness to your smile. It should be contrasted by how real your smile in the last one was,” Swift says, before Sink kills the scene: “Oh my god! That was amazing.”
By the end, Swift thanks the crew as they film the final scene. Swift then explains the sentiment she tried to portray in the short film and the lyrics.
“Like we’re watching a person lose an element of innocence and naivite and watching her turn it into something beautiful,” she says. “In the old her, there’s a stoism and seriousness, and a stillness but a sadness. She’s fine, but she’s not who we met… Like we’re watching a person come of age.”
The visual is nominated for Best Music Video at next year’s Grammy Awards after it took home the prize for Favorite Music Video at the American Music Awards, and a trio of prizes, including Video of the Year, at the MTV VMAs earlier this year.
“So many reasons to lose my damn mind today,” Swift wrote on her Instagram Stories after Grammy nods were announced. She called “All Too Well” the “song I’m most proud of, out of anything I’ve written,” and specifically celebrated its nomination in the Song of the Year category — “an award I’ve never won, that honors the songwriting… it’s momentous and surreal.”
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“I want to ramble about the magic and mystery of time and fate and reclaiming my art, but instead I think I’ll go scream for ten minutes straight,” she added. “And think about how this wouldn’t have happened without you.”
“All Too Well” was originally released in 2012 on Red, which Swift has re-recorded as part of her massive project to reclaim her master recordings. The long-teased 10-minute original version of the track appeared on Red (Taylor’s Version) this time around, which features even more biting lyrics about the relationship that inspired it. The song specifically goes hard on the age difference. Swift was on the cusp of 21 when she was in this relationship with an older partner.